Sunday, August 08, 2010

Elena Kagan Sworn In at the U.S. Supreme Court: The Second Straight Former "Paul, Weiss et al." Summer Associate Joins SCOTUS

Elena Kagan, following Sonia Sotomayor, has become the second straight former Summer Associate at the New York law firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP to be sworn in as a new Justice at the United States Supreme Court.

Being a Paul Weiss alum myself, the LawPundit trusts that he can be excused a bit of biased joy at the event, in spite of some initial reservations about Kagan, reservations which we hope shall be dispelled in the course her work at the Court.

For the details, Janet Hook of the Los Angeles Times reports from Washington D.C. at Elena Kagan sworn in as Supreme Court justice to become third woman on the current court. Here is the AP video via YouTube of the swearing in ceremony:

Our prediction here at LawPundit is that Kagan will be far more middle-of-the-road in her work at the Supreme Court than everyone expects. We make that prediction based upon an analysis of her character, which tends toward jurisprudential and legal unity rather than politically-colored judicial extremism. As we posted previously at LawPundit, that strong feature of her personality should move her toward the center when she actually starts to exercise her judicial responsibilities, because it is at the center that a Justice almost always makes the greatest degree of difference, not on the fringes.

Senate Confirms Kagan in Partisan Vote -

For the record on Elena Kagan, I refer to a New York Times article by Carl Hulse, Senate Confirms Kagan in Partisan Vote.

The vote was 63-37.

Only one Democratic Senator voted "no", Ben Nelson of Nebraska. I grew up in Nebraska and have many friends throughout that great State, but one has to recognize that Nebraskans are about as arch-conservative as you can get. This has advantages and disadvantages. Nelson is voting "no" so he can get re-elected to the Senate.

Five Republican Senators
voted for Kagan:

Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins of Maine
Judd Gregg of New Hampshire
Dick Lugar of Indiana
Lindsey Graham of South Carolina

Those may turn out -- in future retrospect -- to be the smarter Republicans on the Senate, as I expect Kagan, who is not necessarily our own cup of tea, either, however to be much more middle of the road than most people expect and to have a moderating influence on a Court which is currently hopelessly split into liberal and conservative factions, with Justice Kennedy calling the shots. That has to stop, and Kagan may have a hand in bringing the rest of the Justices at the U.S. Supreme Court to their senses.

Politico quotes Lindsey Graham, by no means one of our favorite Congressmen, who made a very astute statement:
"“Things are changing. I worry the direction we’re drifting. I don’t question any of my colleagues’ decisions; I would just like to get us back to more traditional ‘advice and consent,’ where the [presidential] election is respected,” Graham said. “I worry about where this takes us as a nation with the judiciary.”"
Graham is quite correct that the extreme partisanship that has developed in the country is extremely harmful and that a return to traditional respect of the President and of the Supreme Court is essential to help get the country moving again.

One way for the Supreme Court to achieve that is to stop appearing as a politically-divided organ and rather to present as much as possible a unified front of Justices to the country, Justices responsible for applying the law in the nation's highest Court. Perhaps Kagan can move the Court in that direction.

The ISandIS Network

Our Websites and Blogs: 3D Printing and More 99 is not 100 Aabecis AK Photo Blog Ancient Egypt Weblog Ancient Signs (the book) Ancient World Blog Anthropomorphic Design Archaeology Travel Photos (blog) Archaeology Travel Photos (Flickr) Archaeo Pundit Arts Pundit Astrology and Birth Baltic Coachman Bible Pundit Biotechnology Pundit Book Pundit Chronology of the Ancient World Computer Pundit DVD Pundit Easter Island Script Echolat Einstein’s Voice Energy Environment and Climate Blog Etruscan Bronze Liver of Piacenza EU Laws EU Legal EU Pundit FaceBook Pundit Gadget Pundit Garden Pundit Golf Pundit Google Pundit Gourmet Pundit Hand Proof HousePundit Human Migrations Idea Pundit Illyrian Language Indus Valley Script Infinity One : The Secret of the First Disk (the game) Jostandis Journal Pundit Kaulins Genealogy Blog Kaulinsium Kiel & Kieler Latvian Blog Law Pundit Blog LexiLine Group Lexiline Journal Library Pundit Lingwhizt LinkedIn Literary Pundit Magnifichess Make it Music Maps and Cartography Megalithic World Megaliths Blog) Minoan Culture Mutatis Mutandis Nanotech Pundit Nostratic Languages Official Pundit Phaistos Disc Pharaonic Hieroglyphs Photo Blog of the World Pinterest Prehistoric Art Pundit Private Wealth Blog PunditMania Quanticalian Quick to Travel Quill Pundit Road Pundit Shelfari SlideShare (akaulins) Sport Pundit Star Pundit Stars Stones and Scholars (blog) Stars Stones and Scholars (book) Stonehenge Pundit The Enchanted Glass Twitter Pundit UbiquitousPundit Vision of Change VoicePundit WatchPundit Wine Pundit Word Pundit xistmz YahooPundit zistmz